The wideout who once made $65 million as the fundamentally sound route runner and spirited leader inside the Rams’ facility throughout McVay’s head coaching career is off to the Tennessee Titans, with the trade completed on March 19.
Now, 10 days later, the Rams head coach finally broke his silence on Woods and the Super Bowl champs parting ways while speaking with reporters at the NFL owner’s meeting on Tuesday, March 29.
How did Woods Handle the News in McVay’s Eyes?
Noted in this Heavy on Rams story, Woods knew that the moment he received the phone call from McVay after the Rams scored Allen Robinson via free agency, his time in L.A. was up.
McVay himself admitted that process was tough for him.
“He’s really been a foundational piece (for us). It was a really tough decision, but he was such a pro about it,” McVay said via the Titans team website. “He is such a great dude. Tennessee is getting a really special competitor. I love Robert Woods.”
Woods mentioned when he was introduced to the Nashville media how he had say with where he wanted to go. Ultimately, Woods said “joining this team is beneficial for my career.”
McVay himself sees how “Bobby Trees” can adjust easily to the Titans — since they run an offense identical to what McVay has installed.
“When we were talking with Robert throughout the process, Tennessee is an offense that is operated very similar to the way we have, and I think that is going to allow his game to continue to shine,” McVay said.
What Tennessee is Getting
The Titans may be mostly run-based under head coach Mike Vrabel. Obviously having an All-Pro performer in Derrick Henry in the backfield helps.
However, per Next Gen Stats, here’s how Woods can blend in with the Titans: Woods had the third most shift/motion carries since 2018. The Titans placed in the top 10 in the league in shift/motion rate.
The Rams have also been big on attacking opponents with the play action…which Tennessee also does effectively.
But outside of inserting Woods into the offense, McVay believes Woods will add to the “Tennessee Tough” slogan that’s plastered around the facility.
“He’s a tough competitor,” McVay said. “He is one of those guys where he makes everyone around him better. But you talk about just embodying the way that you want to compete snap in and snap out, the mental toughness, the versatility. What we asked Robert Woods to do over the last five years, and I was talking to Vrabel about this yesterday, you could make a case that he has as complete of a game in terms of being able to compete with the ball, without the ball, catching short, intermediate, down the field (passes), running the football on jet sweeps — we put him in the backfield this year where he is taking offset gun runs.”
Overall, here’s the short answer from McVay on who the Titans are getting.
“The (Titans) are getting a stud, that’s what you’re getting.”